Monday 19 February 2018

Jailed Ukrainian pilot freed

Ukrainian military pilot Nadiya Savchenko during an appearance at the Presidential Administration building following Savchenko's return to Ukraine (Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images)
Ukrainian military pilot Nadiya Savchenko during an appearance at the Presidential Administration building following Savchenko's return to Ukraine (Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images)

Roland Oliphant

Nadia Savchenko, a Ukrainian helicopter pilot jailed in Russia, has been released in a prisoner exchange that may bring fresh diplomatic impetus to ending the war in east Ukraine.

Miss Savchenko (35) was exchanged for Alexander Alexandrov and Yevgeny Yerofeev, two members of the Russian special forces, in a hurried swap on the tarmac of Rostov on Don airport, in southern Russia, on Tuesday afternoon.

The exchange follows a two-year diplomatic impasse during which Petro Poroshenko, the Ukrainian president, accused Russian leader Vladimir Putin of using Miss Savchenko as a hostage to exert pressure on Kiev over the war in east Ukraine.

Irish Independent

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